Colin Marshall

Seconds before we hit record, Snarky Puppy's bandleader, Michael League leaned in to ask if he could "do a little crowd work." I suspect he waited until the last second on purpose, but it's been easy to trust this band when they have an idea, judging by the three Grammy Awards they get to dust off at home after every tour run.

Dan Tepfer has transformed the acoustic piano entirely with his new project, Natural Machines. Watch the keys and you'll see this Disklavier — a player piano — plucking notes on its own. But it's not a prerecorded script.

Moments before the first note at the Tiny Desk, David Crosby needed the mics rearranged: He asked that his microphone be positioned evenly with the rest of his bandmates, rather than in front of them, explaining that while his name is the one on the marquee, The Lighthouse Band has no hierarchy.